WICB to create commercial entity

Kingston (Jamaica), Aug 10 (IANS) The West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) wants to create a commercial entity to increase the board’s revenues.

WICB president Dave Cameron said on Sunday the regional board must find other ways to improve its financial status. However, he credits the improved relations between the WICB and the West Indies Players’ Association (WIPA) for the better financial position, reports CMC.

“We believe that for West Indies cricket to go forward we need to find a way to separate the commercial from the socio-political issues and so while we’ll have West Indies Cricket Board, we’ll have a separate commercial entity that will clearly distinguish our commercial rights and sell them according to commercial guidelines,” he said while addressing the latest in a series of regional town hall meetings in Jamaica.

Cameron, accompanied by WICB vice president Emmanuel Nanthan, said that despite the board’s efforts to improve the game in the region, some territorial boards and franchises have not been professional in their operations and could be penalised for their tardiness.

“I’m particularly disturbed because the new season for 2015-16 started on August 1 and there are only two franchises that actually have programmes ready for the year,” he said.

“So while you put pressure on the WICB to account ensure that you’re putting pressure on the territorial boards and all the franchises to account because they are all being given a substantial amount of resources to ensure that our cricket goes forward.”

He said that the formation of the Professional Cricket League (PCL) is part of the plan to improve the game in the region. However, he warned that some franchises could miss out on the monthly allocations of $45,000, part of which comes from the PCL Fund for Development.

“We are saying that the PCL is a new business and franchises need to run a quality professional set up. Some of them haven’t done that and the board has taken a decision that if franchises do not comply with the standard etc. then there could be penalties. And the only penalty that we could exact is the withholding of funds.”

The PCL, which now captures up to 120 players plus officials in a pool, is hailed as one of the new programmes to re-establish the sport over the next few years.

Cameron said PCL, “increases the number of first class games to 10 in a season, while leaving the window open for the IPL and the CPL, offering players an additional opportunity to maximise earnings.”

Cameron also summarised a number of programmes the Board is currently involved in “aiming at being efficient and effective as we as a region seek to re-invest in the sport that we all love so much”.

Nanthan pledged the WICB’s continuous drive towards unity and the coordinated approach to re-engaging the general cricket community.

Nanthan referred to the work of the newly-formed West Indies Retired Players Foundation (WIRPF) and the impact that the town-hall meetings should have. Nanthan continued to raise the issue of stakeholder involvement and the role each Caribbean citizen has to play.

The meeting also discussed the absence of the senior team from the 2017 Champions trophy, the role of regional governments in ensuring that cricket is taught in schools, team bonding and building for on and off the field performance and how the WICB handle the overexposure of youngsters to the Twenty20 version of the game.

Other issues of governance, marketing and skills development were also discussed. The next town hall meeting is scheduled at Antigua at a date to be announced later.



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